Laundry

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How to Use Oxygen Whitener + a Laundry SALE!

how-to-use-oxygen-whitener-+-a-laundry-sale!

It’s a Laundry Sale! I’m making room for 2 new laundry products and some new packaging (just changing up the colors a bit) – that means that you get to take advantage of a Laundry Sale!  The Oxygen Whitener and Laundry Super Powder are both 15% off – if you want to save even more, grab The Laundry Bundle at 20% off!  Sale ends on Sunday, November 1st. If you want to save on US shipping, you can get free shipping on all orders $125 . This is a great time to try safe and natural laundry products. Give them a try – you’ll see that they work better than conventional products AND you’ll be losing those harmful products in your laundry room. I always say that cleaning up your laundry products is the best place to start because we are surrounded 24 hours/day in our laundered clothes, sheets, and towels. Go here to shop the sale – keep reading to see all about the many uses of Oxygen Whitener.

What is Oxygen Whitener? First things first, it’s a BLEACH ALTERNATIVE. I don’t have any bleach in our home – you don’t need it to clean. Really, you don’t! If you are looking for a safe and natural laundry whitener to replace bleach, Oxygen Whitener is going to be your new best friend. If you aren’t looking for something to replace bleach, you should be looking! Oxygen Whitener is safe, natural and poses none of the health hazards and toxicity warnings that you’ll find with bleach. Want to brighten up your whites? Oxygen Whitener will do that for you but there’s so much more that you can use it for! It’s a cleaning booster and has so many uses besides whitening the laundry!

 

What is it? Clean Mama’s Oxygen Whitener uses sodium percarbonate (washing soda hydrogen peroxide) and other earth derived ingredients – sodium carbonate, citric acid, and pure lemon essential oil. These ingredients break down hard water minerals to bring back your whites as well as breaking down stains and grunge. Keep a bag or two or three on hand – there are so many uses!

The laundry room is where you’ll start to see the power of Oxygen Whitener – start using it with your laundry and then once you see how awesome it is, use all over the house!

LAUNDRY:
  • Whites: Add 1 scoop to every load of whites. I use a scoop for my son’s WHITE baseball pants and there isn’t a single stain. I’ve been asked how I keep his pants white – this is my secret! I add a scoop to white towels, white sheets…. Shoot, I add a scoop to most loads, even colors 🙂

  • Extra Dirty Clothes: Add 2 scoops for an especially dingy or dirty load.
  • Pre-Treat: Want to pre-treat your laundry without pre-treating it? Add a scoop to each load of laundry. This is especially helpful for kids’ clothing.
  • Stains: Wet fabric with water, sprinkle or make a paste and rub directly into stains. Let sit for at least 15 minutes or up to overnight. Launder as usual.

  • Naturally Strip Laundry: Stripping laundry is just removing any residue from some detergents and fabric softeners, or a build up of minerals from hard water that you aren’t able to remove from your laundry with traditional laundry washing methods. I don’t find that safe and natural laundry products create this build-up, but if you want to see how you can naturally strip your laundry, head to this blog post. I use Oxygen Whitener in the laundry wash after stripping the fabrics.

KITCHEN: 

  • Stuck on Food in Pots and Pans? Sprinkle a little in the bottom of a wet pan. Scrub to activate the Oxygen Whitener and let sit for at least 15 minutes or up to overnight. Scrub, rinse the Oxygen Whitener completely off and wash as usual with dish soap.
  • Kitchen Sink Scrub: Add a scoop to a wet sink and make a paste. Scrub and rinse thoroughly.
  • Tile and Grout:  Wet surface, sprinkle and scrub. Rinse and repeat if necessary. I love using the Oxygen Whitener on our fireplace hearth – I find that by using a sponge and a bowl with warm, soapy water (castile or dish soap). Wet with the sponge and water, give it a little sprinkle and make a paste. A LITTLE goes a long way, just a sprinkle is all you need! Scrub, rinse, dry.

BATHROOMS:

  • Toilet Whitener: Sprinkle a scoop or two in your toilet, let it sit for a bit or overnight, scrub and flush. I keep a mason jar in the bathroom with a scoop (in a cabinet out of the reach of any children). This is my favorite use besides in the laundry room – this works SO well!  You can also add a squirt of castile soap under the rim to up the cleaning power. Here’s how I clean toilets naturally.

  • Soap Scum and Mineral Deposits: Wet surface, sprinkle with the powder and scrub clean.
  • Tile and Grout:  Wet surface, sprinkle and scrub. Sometimes I’ll add a squirt of castile soap to the paste to up the cleaning power. Rinse and repeat if necessary. The shower in our bathroom has a creamy light gray tile (not my favorite) and our water leaves a little orange hue within a week after scrubbing – this works really well to combat the orange. Here’s a post on how to clean grout.

FLOORS:

  • Floors: Mix 1 scoop with a gallon of warm/hot water to mop floors. This works best on vinyl and tile floors, do not use it on hardwood floors.
  • Carpet: Add 1 scoop to hot water (typically about a gallon of water) in a carpet machine to shampoo carpets. This works wonders on dingy carpet!

Want to give it a try? You can find Clean Mama Oxygen Whitener and other laundry products here in my shop.

Laundry

How To Read Laundry Symbols: The Ultimate Laundry Symbols Guide

how-to-read-laundry-symbols:-the-ultimate-laundry-symbols-guide
woman with a laundry baskethow to read laundry symbols

The symbols printed on the tags of your garments may seem like they are in a foreign language, but they serve an essential purpose: to keep your clothes looking newer longer. These laundry symbols tell you all you need to know about how to do the washing and drying, and bleaching and ironing. Setting the temperature and wash cycle as recommended by the manufacturer not only gives you awesome laundry results, it can also prevent damage to your clothes.

According to Jonathan Walford, the curatorial director at the Fashion History Museum, laundry symbols were being used in Europe as early as the late 1950s. The idea didn’t catch on in the United States until the 1970s, but today we find laundry tag symbols on almost every garment. While there are slight differences between the European and American versions, most laundry icons of garment tags are universal.

The first thing you need to learn is what each symbol means on a laundry symbols chart. The icon that looks like a bucket of water instructs how to wash a garment, the square with a circle in the center instructs how to dry it, and the iron symbol instructs how to iron it. The remaining laundry tag symbols refer to bleaching (triangle), dry-cleaning (circle), and non-machine drying (square) instructions.

Laundry Symbols Chart: Decoded

laundry symbols chart

Washing Instruction Symbols

Washing Methods

  • Machine Wash
  • Hand Wash
  • Do Not Wash
  • Dry Clean Only
  • Do Not Dry Clean

Washing Temperatures

  • Wash Cold (in temperatures between 65 and 85F)
  • Wash Warm (in temperatures at a maximum of 105F)
  • Wash Hot (in temperatures that exceed 120F)

Washing Cycles

  • Normal Cycle
  • Permanent Press Cycle
  • Delicate/Gentle Cycle

Getting the water temperature and wash cycle right is essential for clean, fresh-smelling laundry, and can even prevent damage to your clothes. At the other end of the spectrum, some garments just aren’t strong enough to be tossed in the machine; if you put clothing like this into your washer, you might well ruin it. The washing instruction symbols above tell you how to wash a garment, what temperature to use, and which cycle is needed. While there are pros and cons to washing with hot water, defer to your garments’ care labels and they will look clean and smell fresh every time.

Always check the label on new clothes or garments you’re unsure about. Look for dry cleaning symbols (represented by a circle) or hand wash symbols (represented by a tub of water with a hand sign). Know what to look for so you won’t put these garments in the washing machine!

Drying Laundry Symbols

Drying Methods

  • Tumble Drying Allowed
  • Do Not Tumble Dry
  • Hang To Dry
  • Dry Flat
  • Do Not Wring

Drying Temperatures

  • Any Heat
  • High Heat
  • Medium Heat
  • Low Heat
  • No Heat/Air

Drying Cycle

  • Normal Cycle
  • Permanent Press Cycle
  • Delicate/Gentle Cycle

Drying is an important part of keeping your clothes looking good and fitting well. If you’ve ever dried a sweater that comes out of the wash three sizes too small, you know firsthand what we mean. Understanding drying symbols can help your favorite garments last longer.

Bleaching Laundry Symbols

  • Bleaching Allowed
  • Do Not Bleach
  • Use Non-Chlorine Bleach

If you choose to use bleach, you’ll want to look at your garment’s fabric care label to see if there is a bleach symbol. Follow the label instructions to save your garment from being ruined by chlorine bleach.

Ironing Laundry Symbols

  • Iron Low
  • Iron Medium
  • Iron High
  • Do Not Iron
  • No Steam Added To Iron

Some fabrics, like cotton and linen, look great after ironing; others, like delicates made with synthetics, can be easily damaged. Wool and silk can be ironed, for example, but you must iron these fabrics without using steam. Following the care labels on your garments goes a long way, but your iron can also lend a hand: Most modern irons feature temperature settings for popular fabrics.

Dry Cleaning Laundry Symbols

  • Any Solvent
  • Any Solvent Except Trichloroethylene
  • Petroleum Solvent Only
  • Short Cycle
  • Reduce Moisture
  • Low Heat
  • No Steam Finishing

“Dry clean only” means what it says. Machine washing garments with this laundry symbol will damage them. “Professionally dry clean” means that the dry cleaning process must use a certain solvent, reduction in cleaning time, the addition or elimination of steam in pressing the garment, and other instructions. While these instructions are more for your dry cleaner, we did promise you the ultimate laundry symbols guide!

You might have noticed that care labels don’t have any instructions for detergents. That’s because modern washers can use cold water and get most laundry clean. Most laundry detergents contain enzymes that can clean in temperatures as low as 60℉. Cold water is enough for most clothes, towels, throws, and other machine-washable laundry, but read that label to be sure.

We hope our ultimate laundry symbol guide helps you take better care of your clothes. Do you want to keep your entire home as clean and crisp as your newfound laundry techniques keep your clothes? Let The Maids create a personalized house cleaning solution that fits your budget, schedule, and unique cleaning needs.

The post How To Read Laundry Symbols: The Ultimate Laundry Symbols Guide appeared first on The Maids Blog.

Laundry

How To Read Laundry Symbols: The Ultimate Laundry Symbols Guide

how-to-read-laundry-symbols:-the-ultimate-laundry-symbols-guide
woman with a laundry baskethow to read laundry symbols

The symbols printed on the tags of your garments may seem like they are in a foreign language, but they serve an essential purpose: to keep your clothes looking newer longer. These laundry symbols tell you all you need to know about how to do the washing and drying, and bleaching and ironing. Setting the temperature and wash cycle as recommended by the manufacturer not only gives you awesome laundry results, it can also prevent damage to your clothes.

According to Jonathan Walford, the curatorial director at the Fashion History Museum, laundry symbols were being used in Europe as early as the late 1950s. The idea didn’t catch on in the United States until the 1970s, but today we find laundry tag symbols on almost every garment. While there are slight differences between the European and American versions, most laundry icons of garment tags are universal.

The first thing you need to learn is what each symbol means on a laundry symbols chart. The icon that looks like a bucket of water instructs how to wash a garment, the square with a circle in the center instructs how to dry it, and the iron symbol instructs how to iron it. The remaining laundry tag symbols refer to bleaching (triangle), dry-cleaning (circle), and non-machine drying (square) instructions.

Laundry Symbols Chart: Decoded

laundry symbols chart

Washing Instruction Symbols

Washing Methods

  • Machine Wash
  • Hand Wash
  • Do Not Wash
  • Dry Clean Only
  • Do Not Dry Clean

Washing Temperatures

  • Wash Cold (in temperatures between 65 and 85F)
  • Wash Warm (in temperatures at a maximum of 105F)
  • Wash Hot (in temperatures that exceed 120F)

Washing Cycles

  • Normal Cycle
  • Permanent Press Cycle
  • Delicate/Gentle Cycle

Getting the water temperature and wash cycle right is essential for clean, fresh-smelling laundry, and can even prevent damage to your clothes. At the other end of the spectrum, some garments just aren’t strong enough to be tossed in the machine; if you put clothing like this into your washer, you might well ruin it. The washing instruction symbols above tell you how to wash a garment, what temperature to use, and which cycle is needed. While there are pros and cons to washing with hot water, defer to your garments’ care labels and they will look clean and smell fresh every time.

Always check the label on new clothes or garments you’re unsure about. Look for dry cleaning symbols (represented by a circle) or hand wash symbols (represented by a tub of water with a hand sign). Know what to look for so you won’t put these garments in the washing machine!

Drying Laundry Symbols

Drying Methods

  • Tumble Drying Allowed
  • Do Not Tumble Dry
  • Hang To Dry
  • Dry Flat
  • Do Not Wring

Drying Temperatures

  • Any Heat
  • High Heat
  • Medium Heat
  • Low Heat
  • No Heat/Air

Drying Cycle

  • Normal Cycle
  • Permanent Press Cycle
  • Delicate/Gentle Cycle

Drying is an important part of keeping your clothes looking good and fitting well. If you’ve ever dried a sweater that comes out of the wash three sizes too small, you know firsthand what we mean. Understanding drying symbols can help your favorite garments last longer.

Bleaching Laundry Symbols

  • Bleaching Allowed
  • Do Not Bleach
  • Use Non-Chlorine Bleach

If you choose to use bleach, you’ll want to look at your garment’s fabric care label to see if there is a bleach symbol. Follow the label instructions to save your garment from being ruined by chlorine bleach.

Ironing Laundry Symbols

  • Iron Low
  • Iron Medium
  • Iron High
  • Do Not Iron
  • No Steam Added To Iron

Some fabrics, like cotton and linen, look great after ironing; others, like delicates made with synthetics, can be easily damaged. Wool and silk can be ironed, for example, but you must iron these fabrics without using steam. Following the care labels on your garments goes a long way, but your iron can also lend a hand: Most modern irons feature temperature settings for popular fabrics.

Dry Cleaning Laundry Symbols

  • Any Solvent
  • Any Solvent Except Trichloroethylene
  • Petroleum Solvent Only
  • Short Cycle
  • Reduce Moisture
  • Low Heat
  • No Steam Finishing

“Dry clean only” means what it says. Machine washing garments with this laundry symbol will damage them. “Professionally dry clean” means that the dry cleaning process must use a certain solvent, reduction in cleaning time, the addition or elimination of steam in pressing the garment, and other instructions. While these instructions are more for your dry cleaner, we did promise you the ultimate laundry symbols guide!

You might have noticed that care labels don’t have any instructions for detergents. That’s because modern washers can use cold water and get most laundry clean. Most laundry detergents contain enzymes that can clean in temperatures as low as 60℉. Cold water is enough for most clothes, towels, throws, and other machine-washable laundry, but read that label to be sure.

We hope our ultimate laundry symbol guide helps you take better care of your clothes. Do you want to keep your entire home as clean and crisp as your newfound laundry techniques keep your clothes? Let The Maids create a personalized house cleaning solution that fits your budget, schedule, and unique cleaning needs.

The post How To Read Laundry Symbols: The Ultimate Laundry Symbols Guide appeared first on The Maids Blog.

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Should I Clean the Laundry Room?

should-i-clean-the-laundry-room?

We don’t see the laundry rooms very often, except when we go to store clothes, cleaning supplies, or to clean our family’s clothes. Laundry rooms store so many supplies, different odds and ends, and they are built to clean and to house things of a cleaning nature. With how many loads of laundry they handle, it’s no wonder when we realise that laundry rooms need to be cleaned, too!

But How do You Clean a Laundry Room?

Laundry rooms are certainly unique to approach when they need cleaning. They can’t exactly be cleaned the way we clean kitchens, bedrooms, living spaces, or bathrooms. But a little bit of careful, creative thinking can help us navigate the best path for cleaning these rooms.

The first thing to go about is gathering all the tools that you will need for cleaning the laundry room. We recommend the following tools:

  • all purpose cleaner
  • clean rags
  • dusters
  • broom
  • mop

Cleaning the laundry room applies a lot of techniques that we’ve talked about on this blog before (i.e. dusting techniques, mopping, etc.) Begin at the entry to the laundry room, and dust the door thoroughly (from top to bottom), using firm stokes. Don’t flick the dust around since this might spread it back onto something previously cleaned. Dusting top to bottom will pull off the dust to the floor where it can easily be swept away. Move to the right once you’ve finished the door. You can dust the baseboards, picture frames, and anything that you come across. Just keep working to the right, from top to bottom.

When you get to the washer and dryer, dust or wipe down anything that might be above the units. Then, give your washer and dryer a quick check. Is it dusty, or does it need wiped down? Every unit is different; some of them have a lot of lint dust built up on them, while others have soapy spots on them that need wiped off. If it just needs a quick dusting, do this. But if it needs a wipe down, spray the units down with the cleaner. Then, take one of the clean rags and wipe down the unit. It’s better to work from back to front. Place the neatly folded rag firmly on the surface at the back edge, then pull towards yourself. These firm motions should pull off the dust and soapy scum. Work from one side to the other, until you’ve completely wiped down the surface. If the front doors of the laundry units need wiped down as well, do so.

Once you’ve finished the units, keep dusting and cleaning to the right until you complete your circle at the door. Then, sweep the floor and mop your way out. Since laundry rooms are small, it is a quick process once you get a handle on the best methods for cleaning laundry rooms!

The post Should I Clean the Laundry Room? appeared first on Maid to Shine | Your Best & Local House Cleaning Colorado Springs.

Laundry

How to Make Your Towels Soft and Clean Again

how-to-make-your-towels-soft-and-clean-again

Frustrated with crunchy or musty smelling towels? Want to restore them to their soft and clean look and smell? How do they go from super soft and fluffy towels to crunchy and stiff and musty smelling? It just takes a couple simple steps to keep your towels soft, clean, and luxurious feeling for a long time.

Towels absorb water, if they aren’t hung up to allow for quick and thorough drying or if they remain damp, they get stinky. Hampers and baskets are full, towels get stuffed into the washing machine and never get fully clean. Then they get over-stuffed into the dryer and don’t get completely dry or get dry but aren’t folded right away leaving them wrinkled and crunchy. I use Wool Dryer Balls and a couple drops of essential oil on the dryer balls (let dry before putting in the dryer) to lightly scent towels and to help them dry thoroughly in the dryer.

It’s much easier than you might think to keep those towels looking and feeling like new.

First things first, here’s my Towel Laundering Method:

  1. Every load of towels gets 1 scoop of Laundry Super Powder – the only one I use on all of our laundry, has enzymes which breaks down dirt, sweat, bacteria, odors, etc.
  2. Every load gets 1/4 cup white vinegar in lieu of a fabric softener – this helps to soften the towels naturally – there is NO smell in the wet or dry laundry.
  3. Every load of towels gets 1 scoop of Oxygen Whitener – this whitens, brightens, and cleans.

De-stink your towels

  • Make sure your towel storage method is optimal for non-stinky towels.
  • Use bath towels no more than twice before washing and make sure that they are able to fully dry in between uses and before tossing them in a hamper or laundry basket.
  • Change your hand towels often – daily is optimal.
  • Never leave your towels (or any laundry) longer than a couple hours in the washing machine. The wet towels and closed space are breeding grounds for bacteria and smells to build up.
  • Never over-fill your washing machine or dryer as you want adequate water flow in the wash and air flow in the dryer to clean and dry your towels (and any laundry).
  • If you notice on my cleaning routine I wash sheets and towels on Saturdays. This works really well to keep the towels clean and put away on schedule.
  • If you have some extra stinky towels use 1/2 cup baking soda in a wash with warm water and then re-wash the towels with your favorite laundry powder or liquid.

Stop using liquid fabric softener

Fabric softener coats the fibers and can keep your towels from getting fully clean –  not to mention it’s full of chemicals that you don’t need in your home. You can use white vinegar as a softener (1/4 cup/load) and bonus, it’ll freshen up your towels too. Simply pour the vinegar in the softener dispenser on your washing machine.  I use a pump on top of a glass spray bottle.

Switch to white towels

If you’re looking to simplify your laundry, I also suggest switching to white towels. Why? You can wash them all at once, they can be washed on hot or sanitize when needed without fading. Wash them with bleach alternative to remove stains without any spotting or fading. And best of all? White towels add a spa-like look to your bathrooms and they match with just about any color or decor.  They never look dingy because I use Clean Mama Oxygen Whitener on all of our whites and kids’ clothes.

Purchase new towels

If your towels have seen better days and they’re showing signs of wear, you might need some new towels. Donate old towels to your local animal shelter or donation spot. I keep a stack of old, worn towels on hand for bathing the dog and when the kids are sick and need a path to the bathroom. Pictured are the spa towels from Boll & Branch, I also recommend Home Goods, Costco, and Target for high quality towels at low prices.Grab my must-have soft and clean towel (and every load of laundry) products with a discount with the Laundry Bundle!

Here are a couple more laundry posts you might enjoy:

How to Naturally Strip Laundry
Free Printable : Laundry Guide
Doing a Load of Laundry Every Day Can Change Your Life 

Have a soft fluffy towel tip? Share it in the comments!

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How to Safely Launder Face Masks

how-to-safely-launder-face-masks

Wondering how to safely launder the masks in your home? A quick laundering or washing is necessary to keep masks in tip-top shape and to keep them clean. We like to do this in the evening and hang dry so they are ready for the next day. Like everything right now, I feel like we need new routines for everything. I can’t believe that we need a routine for face masks but when I talked about where we are storing our masks, you guys wanted to see how I was cleaning them too. I thought you might like to see some details around what we are doing. Here’s the post where I talk about going back to school during a pandemic.

Keep reading for a sale on the Laundry Bundle and the 5 Day Home Refresh.

I set up a small basket in the mudroom by the kids’ coats and backpacks – this is where they grab a mask before heading out. I also have a couple masks stashed in their backpacks in case they need them during the day.

I pulled the backpacks off the rack so you can see this system in detail. I have a mesh laundry bag hanging up in the mudroom (this one – it comes in a pack of 3 and has a sturdy zipper and a loop for hanging) for them to put their masks in before they come in and wash their hands. This is an important step – the face masks need to be put in here and then they need to promptly wash their hands – we remove shoes and head straight to the powder room around the corner to wash hands thoroughly.

With a family of 5 and the possibility of multiple masks in day, this little mesh bag is filled up in a day or two. The beauty of this system is that once the face masks are in the mesh laundry bag they don’t need to be touched again.

I simply zip it closed and toss it in the washing machine on the warmest setting possible.

The most important thing to keep in mind when laundering masks? Safe laundry detergent. A mask covers your face and you breathe in that little bit of air that’s between you and your mask all day long. You don’t want your kids or yourself to be breathing in and recirculating air that has chemicals in it from your detergent or fabric softener. The only laundry detergent we use is Clean Mama’s Laundry Super Powder – it has enzymes to clean the toughest stains and smells, it’s non-toxic, smells delightful (lemon clove) and cleans better than any other product I’ve used (and I’ve tested hundreds!). I’m running a little Back to School Sale this week on the Laundry Bundle – Laundry Super Powder and Oxygen Whitener.  The regular bundle discount is $2 off but for this week it’s $5 off – stock up!

SHOP CLEAN MAMA LAUNDRY BUNDLE – ON SALE NOW!

I just put in one scoop of Laundry Super Powder in the load and run it on warm. Of course, you could add other things to this load, but I have just been washing a super small load (I can adjust how much water goes in the washing machine) with just the face masks – that’s my preference.

Once they are removed from the washing machine, I put the masks and the mesh laundry bag on these hooks on our laundry room drying rack and let them air dry overnight. You can find the drying rack we have in our laundry room here and the face masks here and the smaller kid-sized face masks here.

Where are you storing your masks? Have you figured out a system for them?  I hope that this is helpful for you too!  Want to see my Laundry Room Tour?  Go to this post.

DON’T MISS THIS!
I’m introducing something brand new in my shop – Clean Mama’s 5 Day Home Refresh. I am so excited to share this do-able program with you – it’s just what we need to give us a little re-frame and refresh in our homes before this next season.

front load washing machineHome TourLaundrytop load washing machine

Why We Switched to a Top Load Washing Machine

why-we-switched-to-a-top-load-washing-machine

I recently switched to a top load washing machine after having two different front load washing machines for 11 years. When readers noticed this change, I received many requests for why I chose to go back to a top load machine and the pros and cons of these two machines. So today I bring you my tell-all on the pros and cons of front versus top loaders and subsequent tale of what I learned doing thousands of loads of laundry over the years in these machines. Ready? 

First of all, we have owned three different sets of washers and dryers in this house – the Maytag Duet  front load (2009-2016), the Samsung AddWash front load (2016-2020) and now, the LG TurboWash 3D Top Load. I can honestly say that I enjoyed each set, have recommended them wholeheartedly, and they have served our laundry needs well over the years. But….each one has some pros and cons and that’s what I want to share with you today and I don’t think I’ll ever go back to a front load again.
As far as ‘shelf-life’ of washers and dryers, the Maytag Duet was replaced by the Samsung set that I tested here for the site. That set was donated to a family that needed it. The Samsung set washer was donated but the dryer was broken and had already been repaired two times and this last repair would have been more expensive to repair than replace which is why we decided to look for a new set.  In case you’re wondering, we chose and purchased this set, nothing about this post is sponsored. Hopefully that answers any questions regarding why we have had three sets of washers and dryers in 11 years. In speaking with repair people, the average lifespan of a washer and/or dryer is about 7 years. Most CAN be repaired, but it’s more cost effective to replace than repair in some cases, unfortunately.

FRONT LOAD VS. TOP LOAD WASHER
We’ve had 3 top load washers in other houses, so when we moved in to this house 11 years ago, I was SO excited to get a front load washing machine. I loved how easy it was to move the clothes from the washer to the dryer and how symmetrical it looked in the laundry room. Pretty quickly, I realized that we had to keep the door of the washing machine open anytime it wasn’t in use to keep the smell out of the washing machine and out of our clothes. I found this to be the case in both the Maytag and Samsung machines but not as bad in the Samsung as the Maytag. I also found that it was important to move the clothes from the washer to the dryer, no letting clothes sit overnight or for an afternoon before putting them in the dryer. Most front loaders have a filter on the front of the machine – this is another thing to monitor and keep an eye on as it should be cleaned monthly. I have always cleaned our washing machines routinely, but this seemed more pertinent with a front load machine as they smelled so much more quickly.  This is and will always be my biggest annoyance/downfall with a front load machine. How did I remedy this? I clean the washing machine WEEKLY after washing cleaning cloths and use 1/4 cup white vinegar with each load as a fabric softener. These two things pretty much took care of the smell, but every once in a while I would need to ‘shock’ the washer with 6 cups of white vinegar (per Samsung’s recommendation) and use CLEAN WASHER option to kill any bacteria. This is a great feature on any machine – the downfall of the Samsung is that it takes almost 4 hours to complete.

Samsung AddWash and Samsung Dryer

Once I knew we needed to get a new washing machine, I started researching machines and asked my favorite repair company what they recommended. Armed with info, I started looking for a top load machine that was in our budget, had a large capacity, and had a few bells and whistles that I wanted.   A deep fill option, quick cycle, a clean cycle and a matching dryer with features like a large capacity, several heat options, timers, and a duct clog indicator (this is especially important with a second floor laundry room).


LG 5.0 cubic foot washing machine with TurboWash and LG 7.3 cu foot dryer

We’ve had the new set for a few months and we LOVE them. Laundry is cleaner, we can fit more in both machines and NO smell!  The only downfall to the top load washing machine is that I have to reach in to grab laundry at the bottom of the machine but I can reach to the bottom and so can our two older kids. This is minor 🙂


My favorite laundry products? I use Clean Mama Laundry Super Powder, Oxygen Whitener, Wool Dryer Balls, and 1/4 cup of white vinegar as a fabric softener.
Find Clean Mama Laundry products here.

Curious how I clean the washing machine?  Head to this post for a free printable detailing how to clean a front AND a top load machine.

Head here for the paint colors in our home, including the laundry room.

CleaningLaundry

How to Naturally Clean Any Washing Machine + Free Printable Guides

how-to-naturally-clean-any-washing-machine-+-free-printable-guides

If you’ve ever wondered why your washing machine smelled funny or if you should be cleaning it, you need to clean it. If you haven’t ever wondered about cleaning this hard-working appliance, you still need to clean it. Add this simple step to your laundry process and you’ll have fresh smelling laundry AND an odorless washing machine.

Cleaning a front OR top load washing machine is simple, all you really need is white vinegar and some cleaning cloths.

Worried that your laundry room will smell like a pickle? Once the rinse cycle runs you won’t smell the vinegar.

TOP LOAD WASHING MACHINE

  • Start by setting your washer to its hottest temperature, highest capacity and longest cycle.
  • Add four cups of white vinegar to the hot water, close the lid and allow it to agitate for several minutes.
  • Open the lid or pause/stop the machine and allow it to sit for an hour so that the vinegar can do its job to get rid of the bacteria, mold and mildew and the hoses of your machine.

If your load washing machine has a cycle to clean the washing machine, you can add the white vinegar and proceed.

After you have run a complete cycle with the vinegar solution, you can repeat the process if your washing machine is extra dirty. The vinegar does a great job of removing any buildup, not to mention softening any soap scum and other residue that may be in the washer and hoses. Let your machine agitate the solution for several minutes and open the lid.

While you allow this solution to sit for an hour, it’s time to tackle the exterior of the washer as well as the fabric softener and bleach reservoirs. Using soft cleaning cloth, dip it in the vinegar solution and wring it out. Wipe down the exterior, lid and control panel, taking care to not get
it too wet. Remove any compartments and wipe down around the area where scum and dirt tends to collect. Rinse your cloth and remove the softener reservoir from the machine and wipe the exterior and interior of it as well. Close the lid and allow the washer to complete its cycle.

Looking for the best safe AND effective laundry products? Shop the laundry items in the Clean Mama Shop!

FRONT LOAD WASHING MACHINE

Front load washing machines are relatively new on the home appliance market and have quickly gained popularity for their efficiency and cleaning abilities. Despite all the benefits they have to offer, there is one common complaint that seems to plague owners: stinky laundry. Wiping down the interior of the washer with cleaner, using extra detergent or running everything on the longest, hottest cycle does nothing to help dissipate the scent. However, one simple cleaning task will not only eliminate the issue, it will keep your washer in tip-top condition.

  • Select the hot water OR Clean Washer setting. If your machine does not have a hot water setting, then select a “white” or a “stain” cycle setting.
  • Select the “extra rinse” option if your washer has that choice.
  • Add one cup of white vinegar to the drum and fill the washing machine.
  • Allow the cycle to run until it has completed.
  • After you have finished washing the interior of the washer, take a couple minutes to clean the dispensers. These can be easily cleaned by simply removing and washing in warm, soapy water to remove any residue or by wiping them down with white vinegar on a cleaning cloth. Rinse and dry them thoroughly before reinserting them.
  • Make sure you wipe down the rubber seal on the door as it is a perfect hiding spot for mold and mildew. Carefully pull back the rubber gasket and inspect to see if you have mold, mildew or socks lurking. Carefully wipe down the area with white vinegar and a soft cleaning cloth. Rinse with a cloth dampened with water and dry thoroughly with a clean cloth to prevent any moisture build-up.
  • After cleaning these three zones, you can wipe down the exterior and control panel with a damp cleaning cloth. Maintaining a clean washer and eliminating the stinky laundry issue is simple.

My number one maintenance tip? Be sure to leave the door open to prevent moisture build-up in between loads and clean it inside and out every month.

If you already have the Free Printables password, go grab the how-to. If you don’t have the password yet, head to the FREE PRINTABLES page, enter your email address (you’ll only need to enter it ONE TIME for lifetime access), the password is sent to your email address and grab this printable.
You might also like the Guide to a Clean Home (The Homekeeping Planner is peeking out on top if you’re interested.)

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Natural Tips for Removing Blood Stains

natural-tips-for-removing-blood-stains

From scraped knees to dry noses, bloody messes are an expected and regular occurrence in most households. Accidents happen; and, unfortunately, sometimes those accidents happen on our cream-colored carpet or beautifully upholstered chair. When a blood stain strikes, you don’t need to strategically slap a rug over the offending spot. Most stains, even those that are dark and dried, can be eliminated with the correct products and techniques.

There are two, crucial “rules” for achieving the best results with blood stain removal: the first is to act fast. If you catch the accident as it happens, it’s much easier to deal with a liquid before it has time to dry. The second is to never, ever rinse the stains with hot water, since hot water will only work to set the stain. 

It’s wise to start with natural products when you’re dealing with ordinary household messes. Not only are they non-toxic and pet friendly, but they’re also likely to have on hand. 

Salt Water

If the stain is on a piece of clothing, soak the garment in a bucket of cold salt water for 3-4 hours. After soaking, rub the stain with liquid detergent. Then wash the clothing item as usual. If it’s a carpet or a piece of furniture that’s stained, combine the salt with a small amount of water to create a paste. Apply it to the affected area and rub gently until the stain has been removed.

Hydrogen Peroxide

Because of the possibility of manipulating color, it’s best to test patch this option before using it on the stain. After the successful patch test, dab 3% hydrogen peroxide directly onto the stain, starting with a very small amount. Continue dabbing until the stain dissolves. Then, rinse with cold water.

Baking Soda

Baking soda is arguably the most versatile and effective cleaning ingredient there is, and stain removal is no exception. Mix ¼ cup of water and four tablespoons of baking soda to create a paste. Apply the paste to the stain and allow it to dry for at least 30 minutes. Remove the remaining dried pieces, and rinse with cold water.

Vinegar

This technique is ideal for a fresher stain. Pour white vinegar over the area and let it soak for up to 10 minutes. Then blot with a dampened cloth. Repeat as necessary until the stain has disappeared. Then, launder the item (if possible). 

Cola

Two main ingredients in cola- the carbonation and phosphoric acid both work to fight stains from setting. Grab a can of the soda, and soak the fabric to break up the dried particles. Then, rinse with cold water and wash the item in the machine as usual.

Cornstarch

Mix cornstarch with water to create a paste, and apply it to the stain. Allow it to dry completely before using a blunt edge or butter knife to scrape off the excess mixture. Repeat as necessary until the stain has been eliminated.

Gone are the days of an unintentional cooking cut ruining a favorite top, or a recess mishap permanently scarring their best pair of khakis. With these all-natural stain fighters, you’ll be ready to combat all of life’s little accidents.

The Maids

The post Natural Tips for Removing Blood Stains appeared first on The Maids Blog.

and ToolsCleaning TipsLaundryTricks

Natural Tips for Removing Blood Stains

natural-tips-for-removing-blood-stains

From scraped knees to dry noses, bloody messes are an expected and regular occurrence in most households. Accidents happen; and, unfortunately, sometimes those accidents happen on our cream-colored carpet or beautifully upholstered chair. When a blood stain strikes, you don’t need to strategically slap a rug over the offending spot. Most stains, even those that are dark and dried, can be eliminated with the correct products and techniques.

There are two, crucial “rules” for achieving the best results with blood stain removal: the first is to act fast. If you catch the accident as it happens, it’s much easier to deal with a liquid before it has time to dry. The second is to never, ever rinse the stains with hot water, since hot water will only work to set the stain. 

It’s wise to start with natural products when you’re dealing with ordinary household messes. Not only are they non-toxic and pet friendly, but they’re also likely to have on hand. 

Salt Water

If the stain is on a piece of clothing, soak the garment in a bucket of cold salt water for 3-4 hours. After soaking, rub the stain with liquid detergent. Then wash the clothing item as usual. If it’s a carpet or a piece of furniture that’s stained, combine the salt with a small amount of water to create a paste. Apply it to the affected area and rub gently until the stain has been removed.

Hydrogen Peroxide

Because of the possibility of manipulating color, it’s best to test patch this option before using it on the stain. After the successful patch test, dab 3% hydrogen peroxide directly onto the stain, starting with a very small amount. Continue dabbing until the stain dissolves. Then, rinse with cold water.

Baking Soda

Baking soda is arguably the most versatile and effective cleaning ingredient there is, and stain removal is no exception. Mix ¼ cup of water and four tablespoons of baking soda to create a paste. Apply the paste to the stain and allow it to dry for at least 30 minutes. Remove the remaining dried pieces, and rinse with cold water.

Vinegar

This technique is ideal for a fresher stain. Pour white vinegar over the area and let it soak for up to 10 minutes. Then blot with a dampened cloth. Repeat as necessary until the stain has disappeared. Then, launder the item (if possible). 

Cola

Two main ingredients in cola- the carbonation and phosphoric acid both work to fight stains from setting. Grab a can of the soda, and soak the fabric to break up the dried particles. Then, rinse with cold water and wash the item in the machine as usual.

Cornstarch

Mix cornstarch with water to create a paste, and apply it to the stain. Allow it to dry completely before using a blunt edge or butter knife to scrape off the excess mixture. Repeat as necessary until the stain has been eliminated.

Gone are the days of an unintentional cooking cut ruining a favorite top, or a recess mishap permanently scarring their best pair of khakis. With these all-natural stain fighters, you’ll be ready to combat all of life’s little accidents.

The Maids

The post Natural Tips for Removing Blood Stains appeared first on The Maids Blog.